Research Topic

Understanding Age and Sex-Related Differences in the Biomechanics of Road Traffic Associated Injuries Through Population Diversity Analyses

About this Research Topic

According to the World Health Organization, road traffic crashes account for 1.35 million deaths and approximately 50 million injuries yearly. These injuries are unequally shared by the most vulnerable groups of the population. Road injuries are the leading cause of death for children and young adults (5-29 years old). Recent research has pointed out that while current in-vehicle safety measures can be effective to prevent injuries, certain population segments (women, the elderly, obese occupants) remain at greater risk. Injury prevention policies and restraint system designs have relied on experimental data which focuses primarily on mid-sized adult males, potentially resulting in a gap in knowledge of how to protect other portions of the population.

The goal of this Research topic is to highlight how investigation of the variability (regarding age, sex and anthropometry) of individuals, and the subsequent biomechanical differences between them, may inform the design of safety measures intended to prevent injuries for all road users.

Experimental and computational research addressing these biomechanical differences is essential to guarantee that new safety measures are effective for a diverse population. Only through a deeper understanding of the influence of individual characteristics in their biomechanical response during an impact (and the potential effect on subsequent injuries) can we improve restraint systems to reduce injury risk across the population. As a first step, it is necessary to establish a solid epidemiological approach to understand the influence of these individual differences in the causation of injuries in the real world. Secondly, new experimental tests targeting how tissue material properties and the mechanical behavior of anatomical structures change with age, sex and anthropometry are needed. Last, translating the former findings into models of the human body that can be used to design and evaluate restraint systems capable of adapting to these differences among individuals, as well as characteristics of different collisions, is essential to prevent real world injuries.

This Research Topic invites the submission of papers addressing the biomechanical differences between individuals of different age, sex and anthropometry and how these differences are related to the causation of the prevention of injuries for all road users.

Among others, but not restricted to, the following topics will be welcomed:

• Change in tissue material properties with age
• Change in tissue material properties with sex and hormonal state
• Development of age-adjusted injury criteria for body regions
• Development of biofidelity reference targets and injury risk functions for various segments of the population (e.g., by age, sex, and/or anthropometry)
• Assessment of existing road injury criteria across a wide range of the population
• Epidemiological studies investigating the effects of sex, age and anthropometry on road injury outcomes and risk
• Development of personalized finite element (FE) models of the human body applied to the understanding of road injury causation and prevention
• Assessment of existing physical and computational human surrogates used in the evaluation of road safety measures

Important Note: All submissions/contributions to this Research Topic must be in line with the scope of the journal/section they are submitted to. While authors are encouraged to draw from other disciplines to enrich their papers where relevant, they must ensure papers fall within the scope of the journal/section, as expressed in its mission statement.

We would like to acknowledge Dr. Bingbing Nie as the Co-ordinator for this Research Topic, and we would like to thank her for her contributions.

Dr. Forman is the Director of Forman Research Consulting, L.L.C.. All other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.


Keywords: Injury Biomechanics, Population Diversity, Restraint Systems, Scaling, Ageing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

According to the World Health Organization, road traffic crashes account for 1.35 million deaths and approximately 50 million injuries yearly. These injuries are unequally shared by the most vulnerable groups of the population. Road injuries are the leading cause of death for children and young adults (5-29 years old). Recent research has pointed out that while current in-vehicle safety measures can be effective to prevent injuries, certain population segments (women, the elderly, obese occupants) remain at greater risk. Injury prevention policies and restraint system designs have relied on experimental data which focuses primarily on mid-sized adult males, potentially resulting in a gap in knowledge of how to protect other portions of the population.

The goal of this Research topic is to highlight how investigation of the variability (regarding age, sex and anthropometry) of individuals, and the subsequent biomechanical differences between them, may inform the design of safety measures intended to prevent injuries for all road users.

Experimental and computational research addressing these biomechanical differences is essential to guarantee that new safety measures are effective for a diverse population. Only through a deeper understanding of the influence of individual characteristics in their biomechanical response during an impact (and the potential effect on subsequent injuries) can we improve restraint systems to reduce injury risk across the population. As a first step, it is necessary to establish a solid epidemiological approach to understand the influence of these individual differences in the causation of injuries in the real world. Secondly, new experimental tests targeting how tissue material properties and the mechanical behavior of anatomical structures change with age, sex and anthropometry are needed. Last, translating the former findings into models of the human body that can be used to design and evaluate restraint systems capable of adapting to these differences among individuals, as well as characteristics of different collisions, is essential to prevent real world injuries.

This Research Topic invites the submission of papers addressing the biomechanical differences between individuals of different age, sex and anthropometry and how these differences are related to the causation of the prevention of injuries for all road users.

Among others, but not restricted to, the following topics will be welcomed:

• Change in tissue material properties with age
• Change in tissue material properties with sex and hormonal state
• Development of age-adjusted injury criteria for body regions
• Development of biofidelity reference targets and injury risk functions for various segments of the population (e.g., by age, sex, and/or anthropometry)
• Assessment of existing road injury criteria across a wide range of the population
• Epidemiological studies investigating the effects of sex, age and anthropometry on road injury outcomes and risk
• Development of personalized finite element (FE) models of the human body applied to the understanding of road injury causation and prevention
• Assessment of existing physical and computational human surrogates used in the evaluation of road safety measures

Important Note: All submissions/contributions to this Research Topic must be in line with the scope of the journal/section they are submitted to. While authors are encouraged to draw from other disciplines to enrich their papers where relevant, they must ensure papers fall within the scope of the journal/section, as expressed in its mission statement.

We would like to acknowledge Dr. Bingbing Nie as the Co-ordinator for this Research Topic, and we would like to thank her for her contributions.

Dr. Forman is the Director of Forman Research Consulting, L.L.C.. All other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.


Keywords: Injury Biomechanics, Population Diversity, Restraint Systems, Scaling, Ageing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

21 January 2021 Manuscript
22 March 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

21 January 2021 Manuscript
22 March 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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